Peer passenger identity and passenger pressure on young drivers' speeding intentions

Horvath, Catherine, Lewis, Ioni M., & Watson, Barry C. (2012) Peer passenger identity and passenger pressure on young drivers' speeding intentions. Transportation Research Part F : Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, 15(1), pp. 52-64.

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Abstract

Young drivers, aged 17 to 24 years, have the highest fatality rate in Australia. It is believed that part of this risk is due to pressure from peer passengers to engage in speeding; which may be active (i.e., verbal encouragement) or passive (i.e., perceived pressure on the part of the driver). The Theory of Planned Behaviour (TPB) was used to investigate this impact of peer passengers on young drivers, particularly the influence of the type of peer pressure and a driver’s level of identification with their passengers. A scenario-based questionnaire was constructed, informed by focus groups and pilot studies, and distributed to university students (N = 398). The questionnaire measured participants’ intentions and the TPB constructs, including two components of perceived behaviour control, within a baseline scenario as well as an experimental scenario in which the variables of type of pressure and identification were manipulated. Consistent with the hypotheses, the study found that attitudes and self-efficacy significantly predicted intentions over and above the variance explained by the sociodemographic variables of age, gender, self-esteem, sensation seeking, as well as past behaviour and exposure. Across the scenarios, attitudes explained between 4.3% and 14.5%, while self-efficacy to refrain from speeding explained between 4.9% and 17.1%, of the unique variance in intentions to speed. However, contrary to expectations, intentions to speed were found to be higher in the “no passenger” than “passenger present” conditions, although this finding is not completely inconsistent with recent literature. A high level of identification with passengers led to higher intentions to speed than low identification as expected, but, inconsistent with expectations, different types of pressure (i.e., active versus passive) did not influence intentions to speed.

Impact and interest:

16 citations in Scopus
14 citations in Web of Science®
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ID Code: 47303
Item Type: Journal Article
Refereed: Yes
Keywords: young drivers, passenger identity, pressure, speeding intentions
DOI: 10.1016/j.trf.2011.11.008
ISSN: 1369-8478
Divisions: Current > Research Centres > Centre for Accident Research & Road Safety - Qld (CARRS-Q)
Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Current > Institutes > Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2012 Elsevier
Copyright Statement: This is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Transportation Research Part F Traffic Psychology and Behaviour. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Transportation Research Part F Traffic Psychology and Behaviour, 15(1), pp. 52-64. DOI.10.1016/j.trf.2011.11.008
Deposited On: 29 Nov 2011 04:53
Last Modified: 23 Jun 2017 14:43

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